East Libya-based forces on Thursday admitted to carrying out an airstrike on a migrant camp that left dozens dead, Anadolu Agency reports.
At least 44 people were killed and 130 others injured on Tuesday in an airstrike on a migrant detention centre in the Tajoura suburb of the country’s capital, Tripoli.
The location “is actually a base of a military brigade and arms depot,” spokesman Ahmed al-Mismari said late Wednesday at a press conference in Benghazi.
Al-Mismari added that this was not the first of such attack on what he described a “legitimate target”, claiming the camps had previously been a base for Government of National Accord (GNA) forces.
“We’ve repeatedly targeted it with airstrikes and artillery,” the spokesman said, adding: “In this case, the main responsible ones are those who brought illegal immigrants here.”
The Tripoli-based GNA blamed the airstrike on commander Khalifa Haftar’s forces.
Libya has remained beset by turmoil since 2011 when a bloody NATO-backed uprising led to the ouster and death of long-serving leader Muammar Gaddafi after more than four decades in power.
Since then, Libya’s stark political divisions have yielded two rival seats of power — one in Tobruk and another in Tripoli — and a host of heavily armed militia groups.